Crown rangeland is public land leased or permitted to ranchers for grazing livestock. The new framework provides clarity about how grazing fits into Crown Land and integrated land management practices.

“Our ranchers have long been stewards of our rangelands, and their input into the creation of this framework and their ongoing efforts with land management are important to supporting livestock production, maintaining healthy ecosystems and creating economic prosperity.”

Todd Loewen, Minister of Forestry, Parks and Tourism

The Rangeland Grazing Framework also provides the agriculture industry with the continued opportunity to use the forage production of the rangelands for grazing while keeping biodiversity top of mind. Alberta’s rangelands have long depended on grazing, with cattle now following in the footsteps of bison to help maintain ecological benefits such as watershed health, carbon sequestration, wildlife habitat, diverse plant and wildlife populations and aesthetic beauty.

“The framework supports the important work of ranchers to sustain and enhance the function and productivity of Crown land rangeland ecosystems in a way that promotes biodiversity and ecological goods and services.”

Sonya Savage, Minister of Environment and Protected Areas

"The Rangeland Grazing Framework is a significant step forward in recognizing the vital role that ranchers play in managing Crown rangelands. By providing clarity on grazing practices and emphasizing the importance of biodiversity, the framework ensures that ranchers can continue to produce high-quality beef while upholding Alberta’s reputation for ecological sustainability.”

Nate Horner, Minister of Agriculture and Irrigation

“Grazing dispositions on Crown land are a proven conservation measure, as seen by the long history and the resulting health of the grasslands under grazing leases. The framework supports long-term conservation by solidifying the role of the leaseholder and supporting the partnership between the leaseholder and the province.”

Kyle Forbes, chairman, Alberta Grazing Leaseholders Association

“The framework recognizes the long-held essential role that leaseholders have in stewarding Alberta’s Crown rangelands. The framework clearly spells out how grazing fits into Crown land management and helps bring peace of mind to ranchers that future policy will support their farms and their ability to steward Crown rangelands.”

Brodie Haugan, chair, Alberta Beef Producers

Supporting existing rights

The framework supports the existing land use rights of leaseholders and recreationists and places greater emphasis on current legislation and policy. 

To reinforce the spirit of the framework and support the ongoing contributions and ranchers, the Rangeland Grazing Framework sets out a process for involving leaseholders when proposed land-use changes are being considered.

Quick facts

  • Alberta has more than eight million acres (3.3 million hectares) of grasslands, forests, riparian areas and wetlands on Crown land that can be used to graze livestock.
  • These areas are held under grazing dispositions, which are lease agreements, or permits between the province and agricultural producers.
  • Crown rangelands support 14 per cent of Alberta’s beef herd.
  • Rangelands support multiple land uses, including agriculture, industrial activities, cultural practices and recreation.